Are you interested in furthering your background in mathematics or statistics? Do you want a degree that offers a wide variety of career options?

The MA program in mathematics at ECU is designed to give students a strong background in mathematics and statistics, and prepare them for a variety of careers. A student may choose one of three tracks, depending on their interest: mathematics, statistics, and community college teaching. Full-time students complete the program in two years. You will build a solid mathematical/statistical background, as well as develop the skills needed to communicate effectively in these areas. During the second year, you will work closely with a faculty member on a capstone project. For those in the mathematics or statistics track, this is a thesis or research project; for the community college teaching track, this includes a teaching portfolio.

Support for full-time students is available in the form of a teaching assistantship. Our teaching assistants work in math labs and serve as instructors in remedial and lower-level courses.

ECU Advantage

You need not be an undergraduate mathematics or statistics major to apply. If you have a good background in mathematics and an interest in learning more, our program offers you opportunities for growth. Our graduates go on to teach in community colleges, work in the financial/actuarial sector, work in technical settings, and pursue doctoral degrees in mathematics and statistics-related fields. Most classes are in the evenings, to meet the needs of our part-time students, as well as those with teaching assistantships. Classes are small, and students benefit from close interaction with faculty and fellow students throughout the program.

Students with a teaching background may earn dual masters degrees by enrolling in both the MA in Mathematics and the MAEd in Mathematics. This allows a number of courses to be counted for both degrees, significantly reducing the total number of courses required.

What You Will Study

Program Coordinator: Chris Jantzen (214 Austin Building; 252-328-1897; jantzenc@ecu.edu)

The MA in mathematics comprises three concentrations: mathematics, statistics,  and mathematics in the community college. Full time students enrolled in the mathematics in the community college concentration generally hold teaching assistantships to gain experience as they complete their MA program.

The degree requirements are as follows.

1. Research Skills Requirement

The Graduate School’s research skills requirement is satisfied by demonstrating competency in an appropriate foreign language or by completing certain courses depending on the concentration. Students should see the Graduate Director for information specific to their concentrations.

    2. Requirements

    All students complete at least 24 s.h. of coursework including required courses specific to each concentration area as detailed below. Specific course requirements may be waived for students who have previously taken equivalent courses.

      • MATH 5101 - Advanced Calculus I
      • MATH 5102 - Advanced Calculus II
      • MATH 6011 - Modern Algebra I,
      • MATH 6111 - Introduction to Complex Variables I
      • MATH 6121 - Real Variables I
      • MATH 6651 - Introduction to Topology

      • MATH 5311 - Mathematical Physics or
      • MATH 5801 - Probability Theory or
      • MATH 6401 - Introduction to Partial Differential Equations I or
      • MATH 6411 - Ordinary Differential Equations I

      • plus electives to equal at least 24 s.h.
      • MATH 5031 - Applied Statistical Analysis
      • MATH 5101 - Advanced Calculus I
      • MATH 5102 - Advanced Calculus II
      • MATH 5801 - Probability Theory
      • MATH 6001 - Matrix Algebra
      • MATH 6802 - Statistical Inference

      • MATH 6005 - Introduction to Sampling and Experimental Design or
      • MATH 6804 - Stochastic Processes

      • MATH 5774 - Programming for Research
      Mathematics in the Community College:
      • MATH 5101 - Advanced Calculus I
      • MATH 5102 - Advanced Calculus II
      • MATH 5031 - Applied Statistical Analysis
      • MATH 6011 - Modern Algebra I,
      • MATH 6111 - Introduction to Complex Variables I
      • MATH 6121 - Real Variables I
      • MATH 6271 - Teaching Collegiate Mathematics
      • MATH 6651 - Introduction to Topology
      • At least one
        • MATH 5021 - Theory of Numbers I
        • MATH 6022 - Theory of Numbers II
        • MATH 6802 - Statistical Inference
        Plus electives to equal at least 26 semester hours

        (if some of the preceding courses were taken before graduate work was begun).

      3. Students must score satisfactorily on a comprehensive examination.
        4. Thesis or Research Project

        Students specializing in Mathematics or Statistics must either write a thesis or complete a research project under the direction of a member of the graduate faculty. Students electing the thesis option enroll in MATH 7000 for 6 s.h. Students electing the non-thesis option are required to complete an additional 9 s.h. of course work prefixed MATH and numbered above 4999.

          5. Students pursuing the Mathematics in the Community College concentration

          Must prepare a teaching portfolio under the direction of a faculty mentor. They must also give a presentation to an undergraduate audience and complete an additional 9 s.h. of course work prefixed MATH and numbered above 4999.

            For more information about this degree visit the university's academic catalogs.

            Careers With This Degree

            Graduates with this degree are successful in many fields and careers, including the following:

            • Mathematics, General
            • Education and Training
            • Scientific and Technical Services
            • Natural Sciences Managers
            • Mathematicians
            • Statisticians
            • Mathematical Scientist Occupations
            • Mathematical Science Teachers, Postsecondardy
            • Mathematics, General

            Career Opportunities

            ECU has developed resources to help you learn more about career opportunities and job market outlook. In addition, the websites below provide specific information on careers in the various majors from which students may choose:

            NC Tower

            This website provides graphs and tables of in-depth information on employment rates, wages and ongoing higher education enrollment of graduates from the North Carolina Community College System and from the University of North Carolina system schools. NC Tower includes data on former UNC students who are working in roughly 90% of all jobs in North Carolina. This database excludes information for graduates who are:

            • Self-employed;
            • Work for the federal government, including the military: or
            • Work outside of North Carolina.

            US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

            This website also provides in-depth information regarding pay, projected new jobs, required education, growth rate and on-the-job training information on various occupations.

            Degree-specific internships

            For information on internship information for specific majors, go to the home page of the department in which the major is located and, as available, find the link to the information on internships in that major.

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